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Wind-Triggered Lantern 

Make] Projects 

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build, hack, tweak, share, discover,- 

Wind-Triggered Lantern 

Written By: Morten Skogly 



Battery (1) 

Something springy made of metal (1) 

Feather (1) 

Thread (1) 

Soldering iron (1) 

Knife (1) 


Battery holder (1) 
but recommended 


for weather protection 


Create a little magic in your yard with this flickering garden lantern triggered by the wind, 
made with spare parts you probably have lying around your house. 

© Make Projects Page 1 of 4 

Wind-Triggered Lantern 

Step 1 — Attach the LED to the battery. 

x^ i Hr A 

• Solder one of the LED's leads to 
the battery holder. I got the battery 
holder for the flat 3V button cell 
battery from an old PC that I've 
been scavenging parts from. (It's 
the battery that powers the internal 
clock, and I guess every PC has 

• You don't need a battery holder at 
all — you could just tape one of the 
LED's feet to the battery — but a 
battery holder makes things easier. 

• Remember to test the LED 
first, so you know you're 
attaching the correct lead to the 
correct side of the battery. 


© Make Projects 

Page 2 of 4 

Wind-Triggered Lantern 

Step 2 — Make the flickering mechanism. 

• Solder a flexible piece of metal to the other side of the battery holder. I happened to have a 
long, thin spring from the CD-ROM drive of an IBM ThinkPad I took apart a while back; it 
works great. Another option could be a copper thread or wire, as thin as possible, or a 
piece of guitar string. 

• Then bend the unsoldered lead of the LED so it curves around the spring without touching 

• Attach a feather to the spring with a piece of thread. When the feather moves in the wind, it 
pulls on the spring, which touches the foot of the LED and closes the circuit — which 
equals blinking! 

© Make Projects 

Page 3 of 4 

Wind-Triggered Lantern 

Step 3 — Hang it in the garden. 

• For weatherproofing, cut a slit in the lid of a jar and put the feather through it. Fiddle with it 
until the mechanism moves freely. 

• Use 1yd or so of strong wire to wrap around the jar, to make a "harness" and a handle. 
Then go out and hang it in the garden (or run around with it, giggling, like I did). 

• Possible improvements: Add a solar cell and battery. Create a prettier casing, perhaps 
using beeswax? Or maybe even add sound! 

This project first appeared in MAKE Volume 17 , page 92. 

This document was last generated on 201 2-1 1 -03 01 :1 2:07 AM. 

© Make Projects 

Page 4 of 4